Anti-Aging & Cosmeceutical Corner
THE ANTI-AGING category certainly isn’t showing its age. Global sales of anti-aging products are expected to
grow 26% from 2011-2016 to reach $28 billion, according to a study by Euromonitor
International. During that time, US sales of
anti-aging products are expected to grow
46% to reach $12 billion.
No wonder why supermarkets and department store shelves are crowded with
anti-aging products formulated with new
cosmeceuticals, some of which make unsupported claims. Most consumers mistakenly
believe that these products are regulated
and tested as rigidly as drugs and that the
claims made in advertisements are valid.
This column will briefly review promising cosmeceutical ingredients for which
there is available clinical data that support
skin appearance improvement effects. This
information, hopefully, will help marketers to substantiate anti-aging claims for
Navin M. Geria
Senior Technical Advisor
Doctors Skin Prescription
Navin Geria, ex-Pfizer Research Fellow, is senior
technical advisor and principal of the dermatological
research company, Doctors Skin Prescription (DSP),
Boston, founded by dermatologist David J. Goldberg,
MD JD and plastic surgeons William P. Adams, MD
FACS and Jason Pozner, MD. Geria has more than 30
years of experience in the personal care industry and
was previously with Clairol, Warner-Lambert, Schick,
Bristol-Myers and most recently, Spa Dermaceuticals.
He has earned nearly 20 US patents, has been published extensively and has been both a speaker and a
moderator at cosmetic industry events.
their new product launch in this growing
Effective cosmeceutical ingredients, when
added to a formula correctly, provide optimum anti-aging efficacy. Ingredients such
as retinoids, antioxidants, ascorbic acid,
peptides, broad-spectrum sunscreens and
MMP inhibitors provide collagen-boost-ing and matrix protection benefits. A combination of retinoids and alpha hydroxy
acids provide skin texture improvement
Skin pigmentation correction benefit is
derived when retinoids are combined with
l-ascorbic acid, anti-inflammatory agents,
and melanogenesis inhibitors. These cosmeceuticals, alone or in combination, treat
signs of aging which provide skin anti-aging benefits such as improving firmness,
elasticity, tone, clarity, radiance, sensitivity and texture, while reducing redness,
blotchiness, fine lines and wrinkles, dryness, dullness, spider veins, drooping
neck, sagging cheeks, lip wrinkles, frown
lines, crow’s feet, photo-aging, enlarged
pores and age spots.
The most-widely studied antioxidants
include resveratrol, ferulic acid, ergothioneine and idebenone. Resveratrol has che-mo-preventative and cytostatic properties.
When used topically, it provides UVB skin
protection. It is effective antioxidant with
strong anti-inflammatory properties.1
Ferulic acid prevents nitric oxide production and lipid peroxidation. It absorbs
UV radiation. Its free-radical scavag-ing effects are not as potent as green tea
Ergothioneine increases the protective
activity of l-ascorbic acid and vitamin E. It
accumulates within epidermal keratinocytes for long term protective benefits. 4, 5
Q- 10. It decreases lipid peroxidation. It
inhibits UVB-induced DNA damage and
Green tea’s antioxidant activity is
due to epigalocatechin gallate (EGCG).
It prevents the formation of nitric oxide,
hydroxyl radicals and singlet oxygen. It induces degradation of carcinogenic cutaneous cells. 7, 8
Plant stem cells have antioxidant benefits. They provide protection and stimulation to epidermal stem cells.
Vitamin C reduces collagenase synthesis, as well as post-inflammatory and UV-induced erythema.
This family of cosmeceuticals includes
retinoic acid, retinol, retinaldehyde and
vitamin A esters.
Retinol and retinaldehyde provide
topical benefits with reduced risk of irritation, while pure retinoic acid and retinol
formulae may cause irritation.
Retinoids encourage proliferation of
elastin and glycosaminoglycans. They
decrease collagenase and elastase levels and reduce fine lines, roughness and
These synthetic compounds contain two
or more amino acids connected by peptide
bonds. They perform targeted functions in
the skin when applied topically. There are
four main categories. Signal peptides are
palmitoyl pentapeptide- 4, palmitoyl oli-gopeptide, palmitoyl tetra peptide- 7 and
palmitoyl tripeptide- 38. They help produce collagen.
Neurotransmitter affecting peptides help
relax wrinkles; e.g., acetyl hexapeptide- 8 inhibits soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive
factor attachment protein receptors (SNARE)
Enzyme-inhibitor peptides help improve
under-eye circles and hyper-pigmentation